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smothered curse. "Our inestimable friend, Captain Drummond, brought such a nice young fellow to see me last night, and then left him lying about the house this morning."

Hugh bit his lip with annoyance; until that moment he had clean forgotten that Mullings was still in The Elms.

"I have sent him along to your car," continued Peterson suavely, "which I trust was the correct procedure. Or did you want to give him to me as a pet?"

"From a rapid survey, Mr. Peterson, I should think you have quite enough already," said Hugh. "I trust you paid him the money you owe him."

"I will allot it to him in my will," remarked Peterson. "If you do the same in yours, doubtless he will get it from one of us sooner or later. In the meantime, Miss Benton, is your father up?"

The girl frowned.

"No—not yet."

"Then I will go and see him in bed. For the present, au revoir." He walked towards the house, and they watched him go in silence. It was as he opened the drawing-room window that Hugh called after him:

"Do you like the horse Elliman's or the ordinary brand?" he asked. "I'll send you a bottle for that stiff neck of yours."

Very deliberately Peterson turned round.

"Don't trouble, thank you, Captain Drummond. I have my own remedies, which are far more efficacious."